Juan Carlos Copes (86) was born in 1932 in Buenos Aires. He, too, came from a modest family. He was a good student and was interested in football and engines, as were all the boys in Buenos Aires back then. At 17 he discovered the world of tango almost by accident: he went to a milonga with friends and was instantly so fascinated by the dance and the people dancing it that he decided to learn the tango. From then on he went to a different milonga every night, where he asked any woman he could to dance with him. It was at one of these milongas that he saw María for the first time.
María and Juan became the most famous tango pair of a dance club called “Atlanta.” Their reputation and skills kept growing until they won the national tango competition in 1951. A few years later they began to tour throughout Latin America and performed together with the famous composer Astor Piazzolla. Then came New York and Las Vegas. They married in 1965. But Juan left immediately afterwards to tour the world – without María, who stayed behind in Buenos Aires. For years María and Juan had a passionate and stormy love affair that seemed to fuel their creativity when they were dancing.
Juan and Maria danced together until 1997, when Juan stopped asking her to perform with him. For María this was a huge blow. She withdrew and became depressed, until she got a part in the musical “Tanguera” in 2000. She reconnected with tango and the audience, who love her to this day.
Juan and María are still active tango dancers. He continues to dance every night in one of the most renowned tango shows in Buenos Aires.
Since their last performance in “Tango Argentino,” they have rarely danced together…